Tuesday, November 27, 2012

B27 - 2000 hits, Skype and Dad's Birthday

The past 10 days have been filled with travel, family, relaxing, various offline projects . . . and, a some laziness also thrown into the mix.

All-in-all, it's been an amazing time.

I was pleasantly surprised when I came to Swirlings today and noticed that the hits counter was right-smack-dab on 2,000! 

That brings me to my first Blessings for today's post . . . y'all.  I deeply appreciate everyone who takes the time to read what twirls and swirls within my grey matter.  Swirlings will be 8 months old this Sunday; and in those 8 months, I have made 50 posts (not counting today's blogging).  Averaging that gives an average of 250 hits per month or 40 hits per blog post.   Yay for y'all!  :)

I hope that you will continue to read Swirlings, and that you will also share my links with your friends and family. 

I'm also interested in hearing from you.  Always feel free to leave your comments to any of the posts.

Technology is my second Blessing for today.  I often marvel at the way that our forefathers and ancestors lived.  In the grand scheme of things, it's only been in recent generations that day-to-day living was not simply about survival. 

Today, pretty-much whatever we want to accomplished can be done by pushing a button. 

Sometimes I rail against how utterly spoiled we are today, compared to even a few years ago.  I opine regarding how lazy technology has made us.

But.  I also recgonize the tremendous advantages that technology affords us.

Thanksgiving evening is one such personal example.

Am1, DelawareBoy and Mr. Handsome (our 9-year old grandson) moved back to Delaware a few months ago.  I have missed seeing them and being able to hug them.  They are often the topic of conversations between Tex and me.  We hope that they all are happy and doing well.  We pray for them often. 

Thursday evening, thanks to modern technology, we were able to Skype with Am1 and Mr. Handsome.  "We" being Tex, Am2, Little Miss, Bruiser Charmer Boy and me.  Well, actually, I don't think Bruiser did much chatting, but he did baby-babble through some portions of the conversations.  Who knows; maybe he was imparting fascinating and wondrous secrets to his big cousin, Mr. Handsome.

It was SO wonderful to be able to see Am1 and Mr. Handsome's faces!  It was the first time I had seen them since the left Texas, back in August.

Skype, thank you! 

My 3rd Blessing for today regards my father.

As a clarifying reminder . . . whenever I speak of my parents I am specifically speaking of my adoptive parents; not my birth parents.

Dad was also my step-grandfather.  I was 3 months old when he and my grandmother received custody of me, and it was about a year later when my adoption was finalized.

My memories of Dad during my childhood are a strange, eclectic mix.  My mother (maternal grandmother) was alive for the first 10 years of my life.  Alcoholism was rampant between the two of them.  After she died, Dad went even deeper into the bottle.

As a teenager, he and I did not get along.  While I didn't know it then, I was rebelling against the alcoholism that I had lived in all of my life.  Some of the effects of such lifestyle from a tenderly-young age were not at all pretty.

In fact, one of my very earliest memories is of abuse.  I grew up experiencing a variety of abuses; none of them, however, are really pertinent to today's post.

As negatively as I felt toward Dad throughout all those years, I also knew that he would never physically harm me.  It's quite a paradox, I know; but nonetheless, it is the truth.  I despised his drinking and the havoc it wreaked, but I also knew that he would never physically hurt me.  For me, that was a rarity back then.

Dad died when I was in my mid 20's. 

One of the biggest Blessings that I will be continually thankful for is that a year before he died, we were able to come to an understanding of each other and we were also able to forgive each other for all the junk we both had inflicted upon each other.  I was able to tell him about my experiences that no child should ever have; so many secrets that he never knew about.   And, he believed me; without question.  That, in itself, is another Blessing that I deeply cherish.

That last year of Dad's life was such a tremendous Blessing.  Forgiveness is a wonderful gift; both for the one being forgiven and also for the one doing the forgiving.  With Dad and I, both of us were both forgiver and forgivee.

Today commemorates my father's birthday.  He would be 91 years old if he were alive. 

The man fought in 3 wars (WWII, Korea and Vietnam).  He was a naval fighter pilot; and while it's not an excuse and while I very much believe in people taking personal responsibility for themselves, part of the alcoholsim that he inflicted upon himself was connected to how he militarily served his country.  I know because as a teenager I often heard the alcohol-induced nightmares he would have regarding some of his experiences during those 3 wars.  It's an ongoing reminder for me to always be genuinely thankful for the myriad sacrifices that our military personnel willingly give in order that they can serve and protect our country.  

Lest I leave you with a lop-sided view of my dad, I'd like to close by saying that aside from the alcoholism, I also have some good memories our relationship with each other.  Even with all the ick and yuck that we went through, I know that he genuinely loved me.  That, in and of itself, is a treasure.

Here's to you, Dad.
All my love,

Thanks for reading, y'all!
May y'all each be abundantly blessed.

Friday, November 16, 2012

B16 - Perspective

Today I am so very thankful for perspective.  Being able to to look at a situation, any situation, and think it through from all angles is a precious gift.  Being able to do that through Our Lord's Wisdom and Guidance is even infinitely better.

Thanks for reading, y'all!
Be blessed,

How about y'all?  What are you thankful for on this 16th day of 30 days of Thankfulness?

Thursday, November 15, 2012

B15 - Tex!

On a business trip - and, of all places - Niagra Falls, Toronto Canada
An unusual way to take a bath
Playing catch with Mr. Handsome
Building a train track with Little Miss
Chilling with Bruiser Charmer Boy

Cutting floor tiles for the master bathroom after the Flood of 2012

Washing his truck

The nerve of him!

Finally, he sleeps.

Tex - my husband, my best friend, my Beloved.

So very many, numerous blessings wrapped up in one man.

Tex, I'm so thankful that Our Lord brought us together.  I'm so thankful that you are my husband and I am your wife.  I love you.  Forever and For Always.

Thanks for reading, y'all!
Be blessed.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

B14 - Trust & Friendship

I was all set to write about Tex today.  I even had a few photos selected to share with y'all.

But, that particular blog post will need to be for another day.

I received a phone call from a friend this afternoon, giving me an update on an aspect of her life.  It's an aspect that needs to be covered in prayer.  So, for those of y'all who do pray, please remember my friend and her situation.  The specifics, of course, do not need to be published here in Swirlings - Our Lord will know who, what and why you are lifting up prayers.

It struck me in the middle of my conversation with my precious friend, how very blessed I am that people trust me.

Yeah; the timing of it was a bit narcissistic.  There ya go.

But, still.

I do not take such trust lightly. 

I want the people in my life to know that they can come to me and talk with me about anything.  I want them to know that I will listen to the best of my ability; and hopefully, truly hear them.  I want them to know that my prayers are with them.  I want them to feel safe with me.  I want them to know that I love them.

I count it as a huge blessing when this happens.  I count it as an honor and a priviledge.

It truly is something for which I am deeply thankful.

Thanks for reading!
Y'all be blessed,

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

B8, B9, B10 -and- B13

Last Wednesday, after Tex got home from work, the plan was that he was going to play chauffeur and take me to Am2's house for a few days.
That was the plan.

By Wednesday, I realized that I needed to stay home and get some sleep, so we delayed the trip until the next day.

And.  I'm very glad I did - I needed the extra time to decompress from the previous few days.
(BTW, our roof is done - YAY!  The workers finished Thursday afternoon.  They did a great job, too!)

So!  Thursday afternoon, we packed up the truck.  "We" being Tex.  Not Tex and I.  Just Tex.  There ya go.  Hey!  I did all the packing; doesn't that count for something?  And, just to let y'all know, I have not mastered the art of traveling light when going to spend a few days with Am2.  Me - a minimalist - over-packing.  Go figure.

We arrived just in time for a scrumptious pot roast dinner that Am2 had prepared  . . . hey, do we know how to plan things or what?!

After a few hours, Tex and I kissed each other goodbye, and he drove back home.

The next few days, I was able to hang out with Am2 and play grandma to Little Miss and Bruiser Charmer Boy.  It was awesome; lots of baby snuggles and laughters and good conversation with Am2.  And, even though I didn't get to spend a lot of time with MichiganBoy (work duties and such), it was nice to see him and share some time with him, as well. 

Saturday was the Big Day!  Even though Little Miss' birthday was yesterday, we celebrated it on Saturday.  She had a Minnie Mouse-themed birthday party; and beforehand, kept reminding us that there was going to be a party.  HER party.  Ha!

Tex arrived, with his mother and a family friend.  Even though it was only a few days that we had been apart, it was so good to see him.  I always enjoy my visits with Am2 and entourage . . . and I always enjoy seeing Tex when he comes to take me back home.

I knew I would probably not have much time to do any world-wide webbing while away from home last week . . . so I decided to delay posting last Thursday - Saturday's Blessings posts.

Today's post is a conglomerate of those 3 days.

I love my family.  My husband, our daughters, our sons-in-law and our grandkidlettes - along with our other family members that encompasses the total umbrella of Tex's family.

I mentioned it yesterday, but it bears repeating . . . I love, absolutely love, being a grandma to Mr. Handsome, Little Miss and Bruiser Charmer Boy; and I consider it a deep honor and priviledge to be allowed this opportunity.  I also deeply love both of our daughters, Am1 and Am2.  They often refer to me as their mother, in some form or fashion.  I am truly humbled.  Their own mother is still alive; and I never want to intrude upon or disrespect that.  That both Am1 and Am2 are happy to have 2 mothers in their lives blesses me deeply.

Marrying Tex was so wonderful, in and of itself.  I love that he is my husband and that I am his wife.  I treasure our marriage and daily thank Our Lord for him and for our marriage.

I didn't just "gain" a husband 2.5+ years ago, I received an entire family. 

I didn't really have a family when I was growing up, so being so readily accepted as mom and grandma is a blessing that I'll probably never adequately be able to convey the tremendous impact it has had on my life.  I love our daughters deeply.  And, I truly don't think of them as my step-daughters; they are simply and fully daughters. 


Moving on to current time . . .

. . . Today is the inaugural of my 49th year on this merry-go round we call life.

I am so very thankful for my life; I am so thankful that Our Lord created me and gave me such life.

I often miss the mark, but my goal truly is to live my life in a manner that will bring Glory and Honor to Him and that will encourage and edify others.

So, here's to y'all!  Thank you for being a part of my life.
And thanks for reading.
May Our Lord abundantly bless each of y'all,

Monday, November 12, 2012

B12 - Little Miss

Look at this child!  Isn't she absolutely beautiful?!

Yes, I think so, too.

Today is Little Miss' 3rd birthday.  I first met her when she was 4 months old.  A month later, her Grandpa and I were married. 

I absolutely love this little girl.  She is precocious, head-strong, extremely energetic, nimble, hilarious, exuberant, strong, frighteningly fearless, compassionate and quite very loving. 

She calls her baby brother "Brudda", and hugs & kisses him with abandon.  But.  Let him interfere with something she wants, and she's quick to scold him and let him know of her displeasure. 

She gives the most absolute tightest and longest hugs.

She can chat on the phone for minutes and minutes . . . when she wants to; when she doesn't want to, then that's that and no conversation will be forthcoming.

She loves pink and purple and all things frilly and girly.  She changes clothes multiple times during the day, and loves to walk around in my shoes and the shoes of other adults. She loves to have her fingernails and toenails painted - in wild colors.

She's a nature girl and loves the outdoor like there's no tomorrow.

As girly as she is, she is also quite the tom-boy.  BTW, adult shoes . . . one of her favorite pairs that she enjoys tromping around in are her daddy's boots.  Yep, yep.

She also loves to dig in the dirt, ride lawnmowers and climb on tractors.

When she was about 15 or 16 months old, I watched for almost an hour, while she dragged a bucket of water to pour into a small dirt pit so that she could make mud.  At that time, she also learned how to operate the spray nozzle of a garden hose.  This helped her make more mud in shorter amounts of time.  She then proceeded to sit down in the mud pit and cover herself from head-to-toe in the thick, brown, gooey mess.

She squeals with delight at the most amusing things.

She sings herself to sleep . . . at the very top of her lungs.  Sometimes such naptime preparation can extend through the entire naptime.

She loves trains.  Chugga Chugga Choo Chooooo!

She can scold you with just a look one minute; and the very next, be giggling and laughing with you . . . or, perhaps, at you.  When she's laughing, her eyes twinkle like a million stars.

She watches and observes.  Everything.  And from that, she learns.  Then, she does what she has just learned.

She absolutely never ceases to astonish me.

I'm so very thankful that this little bundle of energy is part of my life.  I am most thankful that she's my granddaughter.

Happy Birthday, Little Miss.
I love you so very much . . . you little monkey!

Thanks for reading, y'all!
Be blessed,

Sunday, November 11, 2012

B11 - Veteran's Day

I'm very thankful to be an American.

I'm also thankful to have been raised with an deep and sincere appreciation for our nation's military.  My dad retired as a Naval Lieutenant Commander when I was around 4 or 5 years old; but the military continued to be a part of our lives.

Dad was a fighter-pilot and served in three wars:  WWII, Korea and Vietnam.  He did so proudly.

As a quirky tidbit for y'all, one of my earliest childhood memory is of my "polishing" my dad's "dress-white" shoes with Kiwi white shoe polish (more accurately, its "Scuff Cover" product).  I absolutely loved "painting" his shoes . . . and I always tried to make sure that the shoes were beyond "inspection-ready."  I loved seeing Dad in his dress whites, complete with his various ribbons depicting the medals that he had earned.  I still have those ribbons. There ya go.

Dad died when I was in my mid 20s.  He had a military funeral and is burried in a national cemetary.  At his funeral, I was presented with his flag.  It's one of my most treasured possessions.

While today, November 11th is the actual Veteran's Day for 2012, tomorrow will be the observed day.  There will be parades throughout the country, along with various other memorial celebrations.  I hope everyone who is an American has been able to take some time today (and will also be able to do so tomorrow) to reflect on how important our military is.

I encourage y'all to thank the military personnel you encounter throughout the day; both those in your circle of family and friends, and even those whom you do not know.   The sacrifices that these men and women willingly give to their country are often beyond what we civilians can really ever fully comprehend.

Have a Blessed Veteran's Day,

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

B7 - Leftovers

It's been a looonnnng day.

Day 3 of the roofers.  Lots of noise - from them, and also from the puppy girls because of them.

Additionally, I was zoomin' all over the house today (mostly in the kitchen), doing this, that and a few other things.  I started this zoomfest at around 7:30am and didn't stop to take my first break until around noon.   The afternoon was similiar to the morning, except not quite as busy. 

My ankles, legs and back hurt - and, I'm tired. 
There ya go.

Tonight, on Day 7 of my 30 Days of Thankfulness, I am especially truly thankful for leftovers.  This means that I do not need to cook dinner tonight, except for the squash that I'm steaming on the stove right now.  That, along with the meatloaf I cooked a few days ago - and dinner is served.

Leftovers also mean that Tex and I have more than enough to eat.  It's a sobering thought that there are many people who do not share this in common with us . . . that what should be a basic part of everyday life for anyone is, instead, often a luxury to them. 

Thanks for reading.
Y'all be blessed . . . and may each of us truly realize just how deeply blessed we really are.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

B6 - Despite Too Much

A few months ago, a storm pelted our house with hail; and consequently, our roof sustained some damage.  It needed to be repaired, but not immediately.  This worked out well for the company we selected to re-roof our house; as they were slammed with a customer waiting list over the summer, and asked if we could schedule our roof for later . . . later being, well, now.

Today was the second day of their walking around and pounding on our roof.  The pounding periodically excites the puppy girls, which then creates even more noise via canine barking . . . afterall, Lizzee and Echo are only trying to protect their domain, doncha know. 

Tomorrow's going to be interesting - the roofers are going to be here again, and I've got mucho stuff to do throughout the day.

For a variety of reasons, I've not gotten a lot of quality sleep the past few days.
. . . And, in case y'all didn't know, it's kinda hard to take a nap when there's loud banging just a few feet directly above your head.  There ya go.

Additionally, today's been a busy day; and bedtime isn't going to happen for several hours.  Tomorrow is going to be another busy time . . . as well as the rest of the week.

Whew!  I'm looking forward to Monday!

BUT!  Despite my being tired and despite the next few days promising to be hectic, I do know that it's all going to be all right.  I also know that I can rely on Our Lord's Strength.  AND His Joy throughout it all.

That's a huge Praise / Blessing / Thankfulness!

And now . . . I need to go punch down some dough and bake some dinner rolls . . . to go with the Vegetable / Beef soup that has been slow-cooking all day.

Here's to y'all's stamina - keep it going to get you through what you need to do.

Thanks for reading!
Y'all be blessed,

p.s. - Tex and I crawled into our new waterbed last night . . . and it was good.  We both agree that we might have over-filled it just a tad, so we're going to take care of that.  But big kudos to my Sweetie - because of him and everything he did yesterday, we didn't even have to miss one night of our treasured and much-appreciated waterbed! 

Monday, November 5, 2012

B5 - A Leaky Waterbed

Our waterbed burst this morning.  Just as Tex was getting out of bed, a spot on top of the mattress tore.  It was a significant tear and not one that could be repaired.  Water immediately came forth and started soaking the sheets (along with the vast majority of all of our towels as we tried to contain the leak to just the surface of the mattress).

Tex is currently looking online to find local waterbed sources, so we can buy a new mattress.

We have just finished draining the mattress and have put up all of the tools and equipment that we've been using these past 4 hours.


There is an absolute multitude of blessings that I am thankful for regarding today's wet adventure.  The following are just a few of them.
Get ready; here we go:

(1) The mattress decided to burst this morning, at the end of our sleep; versus last night, at the beginning of our sleep. 

(2) The mattress went to its watery grave while we were at home; we didn't have to come home to a big, wet mess.

(3) Tex takes these kinds of things in such stride. He simply does what needs to be done at any given time and then goes on about his life . . . C'est la vie.
Man, I love that man!

(4) Tex was able to call work and tell them that he didn't know when he'd be in to work today (or even if he'd make it to work).  He simply told his boss what had happened and that was that; no hoops to jump through or anything.

(5) He has plenty of comp time to use to offset this surprise day off.

(6) The co-worker that usually rides with Tex called this morning, just minutes after the Titanic made its appearance, and told Tex that he (the co-worker) needed to drive himself to work today.  This completely solved a potential problem of what to do about that and made it a moot, non-matter.

(7) We now need to buy a new waterbed mattress.  Thankfully, we are able to do so at this time.  God's Provisions is always a huge praise!

(8) Tex had most of the tools on hand to do this unexpected project.  The only thing he needed to buy was a water pump accessory to go on the end of his drill, so that we could drain the waterbed without having to rent or buy a water pump.

There are so many other blessings surrounding our now dearly-departed waterbed mattress, but I'll stop here. 

I'd love to hear about your similar experiences - where something not so good was covered in an array of blessings!

Thanks for reading; y'all be blessed,

B4 - My Imperfection and God's Perfect Timing

I woke up yesterday morning thinking I knew what my thankfulness (Blessings) post was going to be.

Instead of posting my blog post right away, I decided, instead, to make a reply post in an online group that I have recently created that focuses on living healthy.  There's an over-abundance of mainstream mis-information "out there" that people are mistakenly believing.  One of those myths came up in the group yesterday, and I felt I needed to address that then (and not later).

After that, the rest of the morning didn't go quite as planned.  The underlying reason for choosing what I was going to write about, here, in Swirlings presented itself in an onslaught of unexpected tears (mine).  Yep, yesterday's post was going to be a continuance of my 30 Days of Thankfulness; and yes, the reason for that particular thankfulness is, indeed a heavy-hearted one.  This is a point that I want to make sure does not slip by without mention . . . it IS possible to be thankful for things even when those very things are filled with sorrow.  That, in itself, is even another blessing!

Tex was very caring and patient during this unexpected tear-fest.  I love that man so much!

By the time we started getting ready for church, we definitely had to hustle our bustles.

I decided that I would write my blog post after we came home from church.

But.  That didn't happen, neither. 
Instead, I decided to just relax a bit and visit the ozone for a while, before Tex and I left for our afternoons plans.

I still thought I would get the post written before day's end yesterday.  I figured I could write it after we got home in the evening.

Nope.  Obviously, nope, or else there would have been a post made yesterday, here in Swirlings.  Right? 
Of course, right.

By the time we got home, I was pretty tired.  I think I was in bed by 9:00pm.  Daylight Savings Time ended yesterday morning; and so, maybe I was tired because my body was thinking it was 10:00pm.  Yep, I'll go with that.

The above directly points to my imperfection; specifically that I did not get my Day 4 Thankfulness posted by the end of Day 4.

Now.  Let's talk about God's Perfect Timing, shall we?!

His Timing IS Perfect.  In fact, it always is.

The sorrow that was weighing so heavily on my heart yesterday . . . that sorrow is still there (in part), along with a heavy dose of concern.  But, in the midst of everything, there is Our Lord, and I trust that He is Sovereign.  Over everything. 

I truly believe that it was far better for me to talk with my husband about the matter (even while doing so through many tears), versus making a blog post.  I also believe that this was part of God's Perfect Timing for me, yesterday; even though by doing so, I then did not have time to make a blog post first thing yesterday morning.

Later in the day yesterday, His Perfect Timing manifested itself once again, in the form of a phone call and specifically what was said in that phone call.  It was a confirmation of one of my concerns, and it all ties in with what I am so obscurely writing about.  Being obscure is ok, though ; it's not the specifics that is the point of this blog, it's the blessings that are behind the specifics that are important right now.

There are two such blessings: 
(1) Realizing that my imperfection is, indeed ok.  I've never had a problem with the actual knowing that I am imperfect; I just cannot honestly say that I've always been ok with such personal imperfection.  There ya go.

(2) Knowing that, even in the midst of sadness and concern, God is still God and that He is still Lord over everything.  I know this; I always know this.  In fact, I often remind people of this very fact.  Yesterday, He blessed me in unexpected ways that were very needed and timely reminders.

How has He done this in your life?

Thanks for reading!
Y'all be blessed,

Saturday, November 3, 2012

B3 - Home Sweet House

I grew up in a house; somewhat out in the country, but not completely.
Our neighborhood consisted of 1 long street and 1 short street, both streets formed somewhat of a curvy T.  The house wasn't small; but neither was it large.  It was just a nice, comfortable house; and with the house, came a big yard.

When I decided to leave home and live on my own, I moved into an apartment.  Several of them, in fact.  I moved around a lot for a few years.  Actually, I would move back home for a while, move out, move back home again, move out, rinse, lather, repeat.  It took me a few years to get a grasp on things, doncha know.

Zooming closer to somewhat current time, when I lived in Jackson, I resided in apartments, one-room studios and even motel rooms.  There ya go. 

Interestingly, the longest I lived in a motel was slightly over a year . . . a wing of rooms had been renovated into small studios (to even include cute and functional kitchenettes).  This wing was reserved for anyone who worked in the county.  That should show you how hard housing can be to come by sometimes in Jackson. 

The next longest stint of motel living ran for about 9 months and was specifically attached to a job.  In fact, it was my first job in Jackson.  It was also my first home there, as well.  I had spent the summer working in Grand Teton National Park; and once the summer job ended, I mosied my way down to Jackson in hopes of finding a place to live and starting my life as Southern Belle Hippie Mountain Woman.

But, alas . . . after 2 weeks of searching, I still had not found anywhere to live.  I was pretty dejected and started making plans to leave Jackson.  I went to check out of the motel that I had been staying at for those 2 weeks; and the owner, himself, was at the front counter.  Long story short, he found out my plight and offered me one of his older motel rooms at an employee rate if I would take a night audit job at the motel.  Deal and done.  The job and the accommodations were offered only through the winter; but at least it kept me in Jackson and got me going.  However, a kitchenette was not part of the ammenities.  That's when I learned about crock pots and two-eye electric burners.  Yep, yep.

Bringing all of this to today, Tex and I live in a house.  Not quite as bit as the house I grew up in, but still quite comfortable and nothing to sneeze at.  In fact, we are able to have an office for Tex, a studio for me and a guest room for, well, guests!  Sometimes that room is home to an out-of-town friend; sometimes it is where our grandkidlettes sleep when they come to visit.  It fills my heart with tremendous joy when that room is being occupied.  Tex and I both truly cherish all of our house guests.

And, let's not forget the kitchen (my second studio)!  Throughout the year, we are able to have friends over for dinner or perhaps a party . . . oh be still my heart; another opportunity to cook for and feed and entertain people - one of my passions, doncha know.

Taking this virtual tour outside, our yard is significantly smaller than the 6 acres from my childhood; but nonetheless, we do have both a front and a back yard.  The back yard is fenced-in, so the puppy girls can run and romp to their heart's delight.

I can grumble about the yard when it needs to be mowed (Texas heat and humidity, anyone?) . . . but I truly do enjoy living in a house and having a yard.

That's my blessing / thankfulness for today; 3 days into 30 Days of Thankfulness.  I am truly thankful that I live in a house . . . and not just any house; but the house specifically known as Tex and Sharmie's.

What are you thankful for today?  I'd love to know.  Please feel free to leave your comments below.

Thanks for reading!
Y'all be blessed,

p.s. - The photo above is of one of our rose bushes in the front of our house (and was taken earlier this year).  It's the closest I could find of a picture showing even part of the outside of our house showing (and with today being a busy day, taking a current photo does not really fit in with the scheme of things, doncha know).

Friday, November 2, 2012

B2 - Princess Phones

Y'all remember these?   :)

They're called Princess Phones. 
They've been around since the late '50s, but I seem to remember their being most popular in the '70s.  They came in an array of colors, which was pretty avant gard back then . . . at least, in my own personal perception of what was hip and cool.  That last part might be a paradox; the jury's still out on that.  They were simply the fun phone!

Today, I am sincerely grateful for Princess Phones.

As of yesterday, Tex and I had heard from everyone we knew who had been in Hurricane Sandy's path . . . all, except for one person.  We were especially concerned about him because he lives in an area that carried mandatory evacuation and that also saw a lot of damage as Sandy vented her storm.

Yesterday, I decided to try to contact our friend.  I first called his cell phone, but it went straight to voice mail.  So, I said a silent prayer and called his home number.  And what do you know?!  He was home!

He has no electricty nor internet, and my first phone call (to his cell) went straight to voice mail because all of the cell towers in his area are currently not operational.  But, he did have residential phone service.  And!  If it were not for his Princess phone that he still has, he wouldn't have had any phone service at all because his other landline phones - the newer and more modern ones - all require electricity to operate.  A Princess phone just simply plugs into the phone outlet in the wall . . . and Voila! 

We had a good conversation.  He assured me that he and his family were ok.  He and Tex even talked to each other by quoting Monty Python lines.  There ya go.  Do with that what you will.

SO!  Thank you, Father, for our friend's safety and for Your Covering in his life.  Thank you for "outdated" technology that will work when modern technology failes.  Thank you for Princess phones!

What about y'all?
What is something that you are thankful for today, this 2nd day of 30 days of Thankfulness?

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Happy November, y'all! -and- B1

There is lots going on in November!

Election Day is November 6th - this coming Tuesday.
Please make sure you get out and vote between now and the 6th (that is, if your precinct offers early voting; otherwise, please make sure you cast your ballot this coming Tuesday). 

To that end, I also came across a website earlier this morning . . . The 9/12 Project.

Click here to be linked directly to their page titled, "Our Principles and Values".

If we do not begin to stand together and unite as a nation, this nation is going to implode upon iteself.

Looking to later in the month, Thanksgiving (U.S). in on the 22nd.

In observance, I will be participating in the 30 Days of Thankfulness . . . posting a daily and different blessing  in my life for which I am truly thankful.

Years ago, in the beginning of "My Decade of Healing", I began a Blessings List, jotting down the blessings in my life.  At first, it was a bit slow-going; but within a few days, I was on fire with that list!  As I realized and wrote those blessings on my list, I became aware of even more blessings in my life.  It was quite a snowball that I had going - what started off as a list on a small piece of paper grew into a large notebook.

Sometimes, we, as individuals, can allow whatever is going on in the moment to rob of our our awareness of the very many blessings that Our Lord has poured into our life . . . and continues to pour into our life.

Sometimes we can also allow other people's negative attitudes to infilitrate our heart; and that's never a good thing.

I'd like to encourage each of y'all to guard against both of these.  Don't let anything  . . . not circumstances not other people, not even yourself . . . rob you of your joy and of your ability to count your blessings; for in doing so, you will also allow these things to rob you of your inner strength and peace.

One of my favorite life verses is taken from Nehemiah 8:10 . . . "The Joy of the Lord is Your Strength!"

If I allow circumstances or people to sap my joy, my strenth, my peace . . . all of which I fully believe comes from Jesus (His Joy, His Strenth, His Peace) . . . then I have also decided to focus on those things and not on Him. 

But!  When I put my faith and trust in Him and focus on Him, then I am able to see things more clearly . . . and I am able to tap into that very Joy, Strength and Peace. 

Being aware of and thankful for one's Blessings in their life is a great way to do this.

It's a continual circle:  Blessings Awareness ---> Joy, Strength, Peace ---> Blessings Awareness ---> Joy, Strength, Peace ---> Blessings Awareness ---> ad infinitum.

I encourage you to join me in these 30 Days of Thankfulness!
Please use this blog to come back each day during the month of November and post what you are thankful for on that particular day.  Let's encourage each other . . . and ourselves!  Let's realize the very many blessings that we each have in our own lives!

In addition to Election Day and Thanksgiving, the entire month is National Adoption Month, and National Adoption Day is November 17th.

FYI, National Adoption Day is always the Saturday before Thanksgiving; and, of course, Thanksgiving is always on the 4th Thursday in November.

My original blogging plan for today was to write a dedicated blog post about National Adoption Month;  but, instead, I decided to write this specific blog post overviewing all the significant aspects of November. 

Besides, there's 30 days in this month . . . that should be plenty of time to cover each item in more detail, right? 

Of course, right.

One last thing before I list my blessing for today . . . if you are one of my Facebook friends, I ask you to please consider leaving your comments about this and any Swirlings blog post here, at Swirlings (rather than to comment on a Swirlings blog post over at Facebook).  Thank you; I will appreciate it very much.

But.  Please do feel free to "like" any of my links to Swirlings over "there".
Yep, that was a shameless plug. 
There ya go.

(Blessing; Day 1)

Y'all!!  Really.
I appreciate everyone who reads my blog.  The internet is truly the Information Highway . . . and sometimes that information can zoom at us a lightening and overwhelming speed. 

I'm truly grateful whenever someone decides to take a moment out of their webbing around the world to read what I have written.  I appreciate y'all's time very much.

And as always, thanks for reading
Y'all be blessed!